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Coyotl v. 2504 BPE Realty LLC

Supreme Court of New York, First Department

February 27, 2014

Maria Del Carmen Cuaya Coyotl, Plaintiff-Respondent,
v.
2504 BPE Realty LLC, Defendant-Appellant.

Molod Spitz & DeSantis, P.C., New York (Marcy Sonneborn of counsel), for appellant.

Dinkes & Schwitzer, P.C., New York (Andrea M. Arrigo of counsel), for respondent.

Mazzarelli, J.P., Acosta, Renwick, Freedman, Manzanet-Daniels, JJ.

Order, Supreme Court, Bronx County (Norma Ruiz, J.), entered July 26, 2013, which denied defendant's motion for summary judgment dismissing the complaint, unanimously affirmed, without costs.

The court properly found that defendant failed to sustain its initial burden of demonstrating that its negligence was not a proximate cause of plaintiff's injuries. Defendant's manager testified that neither he nor the building superintendent inspected the fire escape at any time (see Hayes v Riverbend Hous. Co., Inc., 40 A.D.3d 500, 501 [1st Dept 2007], lv denied 9 N.Y.3d 809 [2007]; Perez v 2305 Univ. Ave., LLC, 78 A.D.3d 462, 463 [1st Dept 2010]). Numerous witnesses and a surveillance video indicated that the drop down ladder on the fire escape may not have functioned properly, since it did not extend to the ground. Witnesses and the video indicate that persons evacuating the building because of the fire had to jump off the ladder or be assisted to the ground. Defendant failed to demonstrate as a matter of law that the resulting delay in getting off the fire escape was not a significant factor in plaintiff's accident.


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